I've noticed a disturbing trend in the past few weeks with regards to positions my union is taking since Parkland. About a month ago, they sent out an email stating that they support a list of things to improve school safety, but that last line stated: "...Strengthening restrictions and regulations in regards to the sale and possession of automatic and semiautomatic assault or military grade weapons, and high capacity magazines..." and "...strongly opposes efforts to arm public school educators..." (This email came out the very same day that my school district flatly rejected, with no public comment and almost no discussion, the idea of allowing teachers to arm themselves.) The national arm of the union published a bunch of photos from the March For Our Lives in D.C. It was only photos, but I'm sure this is only the beginning. Plus, I'm not sure how lock-step my state union is with the national franchise. I'm not sure what to do with this and/or what to do about this, if anything. I'm not concerned about the district policy. They have the right to set policy. I have the right to disagree, but I'm bound to abide. I'm much more concerned about the first line from the union email. I think this means they may start using union funds (i.e. money I pay) to directly support anti-gun initiatives, either in my state or at the national level, or both. I understand that unions, especially public employee unions, are going to financially support Democratic candidates and that a side effect of that support could be an anit-gun vote in the legislature, however, I'm unaware of a union getting directly involved in the 2nd Amendment. What I do know is that I don't want my own money being used against me. In my case, union membership is mandatory for employment, but I do have the right to request, in writing, that I only be billed for the cost of direct representation. If I did that, it would cut my union dues roughly in half. (That money could then go the NRA.) If I did that, it would likely cut me off from the union. If I ever needed representation (which is extremely likely), I would likely get only a half-hearted defense at best. In addition, we will also likely be going on strike sometime in the next year. My union dues are about 2.5% of my annual salary, so we're not talking a lot of money here. It's primarily a point of principle. Thanks for reading my essay. I apologize for the length of the post. I look forward to reading your thoughts on what direction I might go. If you have a union perspective, all the better.